February 5, 2018 / 9:57 AM / a year ago

Disorderly Brexit would renew pressure on Britain credit rating - S&P Global

Anti-Brexit demonstrators wave EU and Union flags outside the Houses of Parliament in London, Britain, January 30, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville

LONDON (Reuters) - A disorderly Brexit as a result of Britain misjudging the “self-preservation” instincts of the European Union could lead to a further downgrade of the UK’s sovereign credit rating, S&P Global said on Monday.

“The U.K. risks further adverse economic, financial, and ratings outcomes if it ignores the EU’s rationale of self-preservation,” S&P’s top sovereign analyst Moritz Kraemer said in a report.

He was referring to the EU needing to avoid a domino effect of other countries wanting to leave the bloc if they perceived Britain received a “lenient” post-Brexit trade deal.

S&P cut Britain’s previously triple-A rating by two-notches to AA with a negative outlook, after the mid-2016 Brexit vote.

“The U.K. government at the time misread the electorate’s mood when it invited it to vote on EU membership. It is hopefully not also misjudging central convictions held across the Channel.”

“Otherwise, a disorderly Brexit could become increasingly likely. Such a turn of events would bring renewed downward pressure to Britain’s sovereign rating,” Kraemer added.

Reporting by Marc Jones; editing by Sujata Rao

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